Jump to content
Vonn

Lukie Ill, Yet Again!

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone

 

Lukie is ill again. He has the same symptoms as the other times, starts off with being puffed up for a few days, then has a vomiting attack and then the diarrhoea starts, He is like this for between 7 to 10 days and is well again for another month or so. Then it is back to these symptoms again! It started in April this year and he has 4 episodes of the same illness. I phoned the avian vet and he asked me a lot of questions about Lukie. He said it was really quite a puzzle as the diseases he would suspect - psittacosis and macrorhabdus (megabacteria, I think!) - he has tested Lukie for, and the results have been negative. He does say that sometimes a negative result doesn't always mean that your bird does not have the disease, as they can be difficult to culture. So he has decided to treat Lukie for psittacosis first, as he seemed to respond to antibiotic treatment. He will keep him on the antibiotics for six weeks! He won't have any good bacteria left in his tummy after all that medication! I have been keeping him on probiotics for quite a few weeks now and they have made a huge difference to him. Now it is going to be undone by all the antibiotics, but there is no other way.

 

I have been giving him vitamins, but he did not like them in his water so I finally gave up. I want to try another vitamin supplement and I saw on the Birdcare website that they make Daily Essentials 1 for budgies and I wondered if anyone has used this? I am hoping that it may be more palatable to Lukie. They also have an egg product called Feast which is flavoured with aniseed for budgies. Has anyone used this product? Do budgies like aniseed flavour?! Lukie does not like egg no matter how you serve it. Gosh he can really be stubborn! The vet is anxious for me to get Lukie on a pellet diet but I am not all that keen. It is not a natural diet, is it. Lukie HATES pellets, anyway, and believe me I have tried to get him to eat them. I think I must have tried every trick in the book to get him to eat them. I had to throw away packets of very expensive Harrisons pellets (they can only be kept for a few weeks) during my quest to get him to eat them. I tried the powdered version on his seeds to get him used to the taste, but he wouldn't eat his seeds! "I DON'T LIKE THAT, MUM! I WON'T EAT IT ANY WAY YOU SERVE IT"

 

He is such a darling little bird and I couldn't bear to lose him. I can only hope that the vet can find the problem. Lukie eats a lot of seed and he eats it like it is his last meal! He is a frantic eater - just shovels the seed in!! At the moment, even though he is ill, he can't wait for me to refill his seed bowl and starts dancing about when he sees me come into the room with it, and is eating it within a second of me putting it down! I don't see any powder at the bottom of the seed dish, but he is a very lean bird, so I thought it would be more likely to be the megabacteria? But then again, he wouldn't get better on antibiotics, would he? It really is a puzzle. I don't see any seed in his poos, so he must be digesting the seed.

 

When he is ill, he likes me to sit with him all the time. I can't, of course, but every time I pass the door I hear this plaintive little tweet and then kissing sounds, to try and get me to come in and sit with him. He is so happy if I go in and greets me with lots of affectionate noises. It breaks your heart! I am spending as much time as I can with him, without starting the squawking problem up again. I would carry him around with me, if he was tame. When I am sitting in the living room with him he looks so content, even though he is puffed up and feeling awful, and will either settle down and doze or just look at me and make the odd affectionate noise, the little darling. This is why it is so hard to leave him alone.

 

I have been looking about on the internet for avian health sites to try and see if there is something that ties in with his symptoms. Can anyone recommend a good site?

 

Thanks for listening to all my woes about Lukie, again. I just hope you don't all get tired of hearing about them - it is so helpful to share my worries with you all.

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am very sorry to hear that Lukie is sick again. I bet it is something that he carrying. Does he seem to get ill right after a molt or a stressful time in his life?

 

I know you put that he won't eat pellets, so you know I had Harrison pellets and I kept them in the freezer to keep them fresh and smashed them up they last much longer then just a few weeks.

 

How does he do with his veggies and such?

 

He really needs to be on more of a seed diet, even giving him Vitamin high in A is a good start because that is what is most lacking in their diets. Brocolli, Kale, Spinach are all a good source.

 

Keep us updated.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I am very sorry to hear that Lukie is sick again. I bet it is something that he carrying. Does he seem to get ill right after a molt or a stressful time in his life?

 

I know you put that he won't eat pellets, so you know I had Harrison pellets and I kept them in the freezer to keep them fresh and smashed them up they last much longer then just a few weeks.

 

How does he do with his veggies and such?

 

He really needs to be on more of a seed diet, even giving him Vitamin high in A is a good start because that is what is most lacking in their diets. Brocolli, Kale, Spinach are all a good source.

 

Keep us updated.

 

 

Hi Elly

 

Yes, I did start putting the Harrisons in the freezer - it was the last packed I bought - and this was the meal, not the pellets. I decided to get that when you said you crushed your pellets. I mixed a little in his seed but then he wouldn't eat his seed! I dipped part of his veg in a little of the meal but he left that part! The vet suggested putting the Harrisons on a mirror so that Luke will think that another bird is going to eat his food. Luke was not fooled by this trick - the other bird was welcome to it, as far as he was concerned! He seems quite determined not to try it. I eventually got so frustrated that I gave up. I had thrown away so many packets of the pellets in the past. I kept the meal in the freezer for quite a few weeks but then discarded it. How long do you keep yours in the freezer? I don't want him on an all pellet diet as I really feel it is not natural? I have also read about birds getting health problems from being on an all pellet diet - I forget what they were now. I would be happy to give him pellets and equal quantities of seed & veg. so that the pellets are not the main part of his diet, but the vet would like him mainly on a pellet diet, not just part of the diet. Do yoiu think I am making a mistake or giving up too soon?

 

He has not been eating much veg of late, although he has had a little ruby chard - chard is his most favourite veg. I have stopped all veg now due to the diarrhoea. He had a very runny lime green poo (sorry to be so graphic!!) this morning and his vent is very dirty so I will have to clean it. I hate doing this as it stresses him so much. He is still fluffed up and quiet but does still call to me. I wish I had the antibiotic now but it will arrive tomorrow. I told the vet that I am going to take him to the emergency clinic today, if I think he is any worse and cannot wait till Monday. The vet is a long drive away which is why the antibiotics were posted to us as I am not feeling well. I am wondering if I have been infected by the psittacosis. I have some of the symptoms and have had for quite a few weeks. I have just ignored it and thought is was just a virus that would go away on it's own. Now I am concerned as I am feeling very unwell today. I have a weak immune system due to lots of chemotherapy in the past. If I don't feel a lot better in a couple of days, I will ask the doctor for a blood test for psittacosis just in case.

 

It is all such a worry, Elly. Would you take Lukie to the emergency clinic today and not wait till tomorrow for the antibiotics? Is there a chance he will suddenly die! I am going to get him some vitamins next week - I am hoping someone can tell me more about Daily Essentials 1. I hear that the Queen uses their products for her budgies!

 

Thanks for taking the time to reply and for all your helpful advice. I really do appreciate it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The best diet is a variety diet and I keep my pellets in the freezer for quite awhile because it keeps them fresh.

 

So 30% pellets/30% seeds and then veggies/fruits. Birds are stubborn I know my Merlin is he eats around the crushed pellets at least. It can take up to a year or more to get them to eat it.

 

As for the water and the vitamins, Merlin never new the difference maybe try a different type of vitamin supplement in the water? Or his bath water if he likes to bathe.

 

The green lime poo doesn't sound promising and if it were me yes I would take him to the ER. Pretty died suddenly, and I don't mean to scare you but that is what happened to me.

 

Bea had some boughts here and there with Oz you may want to PM her for some advice too as he was getting sick here and there and had a hard time figuring it out too.

 

Keep us update.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Vonn, it really does sound like he may be carrying a disease that has weakened his immune system. Perhaps take him to a vet and have him tested for psittacosis/coccidiosis etc. It isn't normal for him to be getting sick so often. I hope you can find the cause.

 

 

Feathers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its tough having a bird that has an illness that comes and goes. For me, it feels like every time Baby gets sick, it could be her last.

 

If you've been feeling sick, DEFINITELY get yourself checked out, especially if your immune system is compromised, like you said.

 

I'm not sure what to suggest about the pellets. The freezer is a good idea and just keep trying. I think that a diet of half pellets and half seed/veggies would be just fine. Very well balanced. I think the concern about all pellet diets is that the high protein might take a toll on the bird's organs over time. When birds are sick, they need all the nutrients they can get, so keep trying with the pellets.

 

Good luck!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Elly, Feathers and armchairangel for your replies.

 

Elly, I feel sure that you are having to repeat your advice with me!! I have a feeling you did tell me the percentages before. Sorry about that - I have a terrible memory. I really should have looked back at the posts from last time he was ill.

 

I feel much happier if I can just make the pellets part of his diet. If it can take a whole year for him to get used to eating the pellets than I really haven't given it enough time. I will order some more and try again. Can I keep them in the freezer for a couple of months? Their smallest bag will last a very long time. If I can, then it won't be such an expensive waste.

 

Lukie seemed to improve during the day. He stools are normal and he has been much more lively. He is still puffed up at times, so he is definitely in need of medication. I am counting the hours till the postman arrives with the antibiotic. Every time I go to the living room, I am so frightened that he may not be sitting on his perch. It will be such a relief when this is all sorted out.

 

I am just like you armchairangel, thinking that this could be his last. I am so very attached to Lukie. My OH thinks I am far too attached to him!! You mentioned about the protein in the pellets and I wondered if I should stop trying to feed him egg, if I am going to try the pellets again? This would be too much protein then wouldn't it - if he ate any that is!!? I was thinking of trying a egg product, instead of the fresh cooked egg, but perhaps I should just concentrate on the pellets and forget about egg altogether? I will go for tests if I don't get any better. I seem to feel worse in the morning then I take some paracetamol and it makes me feel well enough to carry on and do things. By the evening I need to take more paracetamol!

 

Feathers, the vet says that he is just going to treat Lukie for psittacosis without doing another test as it may also come back with a false negative result. The test costs £45 a time plus the vet bill of £25 so it is a lot of money - well, for us anyway. If the treatment he gives him for six weeks doesn't work, then the expense really starts. The vet said it could be up to £300 in tests and Xrays etc. to try and find out what is causing this illness!! He says it could be a megabacteria, but he says that it is unusual for a bird to be ill for so long with this illness, so he has decided to treat for psittacosis first.

 

I will keep you all informed of how things go. Thanks again for your replies.

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Feathers, the vet says that he is just going to treat Lukie for psittacosis without doing another test as it may also come back with a false negative result. The test costs £45 a time plus the vet bill of £25 so it is a lot of money - well, for us anyway. If the treatment he gives him for six weeks doesn't work, then the expense really starts. The vet said it could be up to £300 in tests and Xrays etc. to try and find out what is causing this illness!! He says it could be a megabacteria, but he says that it is unusual for a bird to be ill for so long with this illness, so he has decided to treat for psittacosis first.

 

I think treating him for this is a good course of action. After treatment I'd put him on a probiotic so that you could treat him for cocci later as well. The vet will explain how to tell if the psittacocis treatment is working. You can tell within a couple of days whether they have it and need continued treatment. Often these diseases don't show until they are stressed, such as when they moult. All of my birds get wormed and treated for cocci, amongst other things, during their quarantine period. Any that I show also go through a mini quarantine before they are released back into the flock.

 

Good luck with it all.

 

 

Feathers.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes you can keep pellets in the freezer for a least 6 months, call the company and they can tell you for sure.

I am glad Lukie is feeling better. I agree with Aly that there is some underlying bug there in his system and when his immunity goes done it affects him. Keep us updated!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Phoebe
;) Poor Lukie, I hope you can figure out what is making him ail. :wub:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest BUZZBEE

I'm sorry.... I really hope you can get to the bottom of the problem ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies Elly, Feathers and Phoebe.

 

Lukie is worse today, unfortunately. His poos were very watery at first, which gave me quite a fright, and then back to runny. This afternoon he didn't make a sound just sat all puffed up and looking miserable. He didn't even make his little tweets when he sees me. His antibiotic (doxycycline) has been given to him and I am hoping that he has had some of it. I think he may have, as there were some seed shells in the water, although I never actually saw him drinking it. I held the drinker up to him a number of times but he wouldn't have any. I had to make two litres with de-ionised water and one packet of doxycycline 260mg. I am keeping it in the fridge. I tried to get a Vetark UV protective medication drinker today, but nobody seems to have them here. Maybe Vetark have stop making them? The drinker shows exactly how much your bird has had and so would be really useful. The vet says I must put some Avipro in the water with the doxycycline. I thought that the pro and prebiotics in it would be wiped out by the antibiotic, but the vet seems to think some may survive and help him cope with the long term treatment?!

 

I wish I knew how to administer the antibiotic into his crop (if that is what you do?) but I don't. If he survives tonight, and still looks this bad in the morning, I will phone the vet again and ask him to administer the antibiotic directly. I have some Guardian Angel, which I have never used before, and I am wondering if I could use it while I wait for the Avipro to arrive in 3-5 days? Do you think it would interfere with the antibiotic? I just want to do all I can possibly do to save him. He is really deteriorating. It's so heart breaking.

 

I have contacted the vet twice today and emailed him over the weekend - he is probably sick of me by now!!

 

Before I order the pellets, I will phone Harrisons about freezing them, Elly. I didn't realise they could possibly be kept that long. If they agree with freezing them for that amount of time, it would make it much more affordable.

 

Feathers, the vet hasn't mentioned anything about how to tell if the treatment is working! Can you tell me, please, if you don't mind, that is.

 

Poor little chap has just had a night fright on top of everything! I have managed to settle him again and hopefully he will get to sleep quickly, once more. I will be pleased when morning comes.

 

Thanks again for your support. I can't tell you how much it helps.

 

Luv

 

Vonn xxx

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't answer any of your question maybe on of our more experience breeders such as Daz, Kaz or feathers can help you out. Hugs and prayers for Lukie :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I can't answer any of your question maybe on of our more experience breeders such as Daz, Kaz or feathers can help you out. Hugs and prayers for Lukie :(

 

 

Thanks, Elly

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HI

 

Thought I would give you and update on Lukie.

 

We had a couple of very worrying nights when he looked very ill. We took him to the vet and he did another test for megabacteria. It was also negative, so he has decided to wait till Monday and see if the antibiotic will take effect. He also gave Lukie a high nutrient 'feed' into his crop to give him a boost. Poor little boy was so stressed out by all the procedures. It was the first time he had been left in a strange environment without us. Last night he had a night fright, but it was to be expected after all he had been through that day. My husband was so good at comforting him and he was soon happy again. Whenever he is really scared he will hop onto your finger without hesitation and then my husband brings him close to his face and chats to him softly. Lukie loves this and it's amazing how quickly his heart rate goes down. It's so sweet the way he rushes to find us when he is scared. We had to leave the light on all night. We tried the infra red lamp on him, but he didn't like it - I think the red colour frightened himl. So we had to keep the whole room warm day and night.

 

Today he is a little puffed up, but nothing like before, so maybe the antibiotic is starting to work. He is feeling very grumpy today, but we noticed that antibiotics do make him grumpy. Once the course is finished the vet will put him on Guardian Angel for a while to build him up again.

 

If he hasn't shown a great improvement by Monday, we have to take him in and he will probably have to have Xrays and blood tests. HUGE expense, which I really don't know how we are going to be able to afford. I asked the vet if we could have one test at a time to make it more affordable. He said that he has to give Lukie an anaesthetic and he doesn't want to do that twice - it's far safer and less stressful for the bird to have all the tests done in one go.

 

I will let you know how things go.

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hugs, you both are extraordinary pet owners..hats off to you. Keep us update and we will continue to keep Lukie in our thoughts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
hugs, you both are extraordinary pet owners..hats off to you. Keep us update and we will continue to keep Lukie in our thoughts.

 

 

Elly, what a nice thing to say! Thank you so much. I will let you know what happens.

 

Strange that Lukie is only 'tame' when he is frightened - I can't understand why he doesn't like to sit on our fingers or shoulders. On well, they each have their own little likes and dislikes I suppose - the main thing is he is happy.

 

My husband is very good with animals, birds, fish - you name it. One day we got up and found that the outdoor fish pond had sprung a leak during the night and all the fish appeared to be dead. It was upsetting to us as we know each fish and its character. They do have characters, I promise, we are not just being sentimental here. One is the leader of the shoal, another is the brave one who is willing to try anything new (eg new little 'cave' we added or different water feature which he will swim under first etc) another is the loner and keeps to himself a lot, another is the follower and always tries things last. We got to know their characters just by watching them when we are out sitting on the patio. Anyway, my husband took each 'dead' fish, massaged their hearts and blew into their mouths and, one by one, he revived them. The last one seemed beyond hope with glazed fixed eyes, so, as a last resort he applied a gentle stream of bubbly water into its mouth while massaging its heart. After ages it suddenly coughed and spluttered and recovered! They are all fit and well and you'd never think they were at deaths door at one time. Friends thought we were crazy and said we should have just thrown them out and bought new ones. " They're just fish, for heavens sake" was the normal response. They are not just fish to us - we've had them for over 10 years.

 

Luv

 

Vonn xx

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

He is right what a wonderful man and tell me I said that. I think just like kids birds feel more needy when they don't feel well and it comforts them. When they feel good they can get back to their old antics :(Laughing out loud):

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
hugs, you both are extraordinary pet owners..hats off to you. Keep us update and we will continue to keep Lukie in our thoughts.

 

 

Elly, what a nice thing to say! Thank you so much. I will let you know what happens.

 

Strange that Lukie is only 'tame' when he is frightened - I can't understand why he doesn't like to sit on our fingers or shoulders. On well, they each have their own little likes and dislikes I suppose - the main thing is he is happy.

 

My husband is very good with animals, birds, fish - you name it. One day we got up and found that the outdoor fish pond had sprung a leak during the night and all the fish appeared to be dead. It was upsetting to us as we know each fish and its character. They do have characters, I promise, we are not just being sentimental here. One is the leader of the shoal, another is the brave one who is willing to try anything new (eg new little 'cave' we added or different water feature which he will swim under first etc) another is the loner and keeps to himself a lot, another is the follower and always tries things last. We got to know their characters just by watching them when we are out sitting on the patio. Anyway, my husband took each 'dead' fish, massaged their hearts and blew into their mouths and, one by one, he revived them. The last one seemed beyond hope with glazed fixed eyes, so, as a last resort he applied a gentle stream of bubbly water into its mouth while massaging its heart. After ages it suddenly coughed and spluttered and recovered! They are all fit and well and you'd never think they were at deaths door at one time. Friends thought we were crazy and said we should have just thrown them out and bought new ones. " They're just fish, for heavens sake" was the normal response. They are not just fish to us - we've had them for over 10 years.

 

Luv

 

Vonn xx

 

l understand how you feel about your fish. a few years back l had a few goldfish in a pond in my backyard, one day l woke up and l went to the pond, only to find no fish in the pond ( l had a dozen fish in there). when l looked closer l noticed scales in the water also a fish head. l realized then my pond was raided by raccoons during the night. when l was cleaning the pond l noticed some movement under a pail l had in the pond. l went to pick it up, all of a sudden a goldfish shot right out of the pail. l caught it and put it inside my house in an aquarium. l felt so bad for the only surviving goldfish because it kept swimming up and down for almost an hour. it looked like it was searching for its friends. my friends and family thought l was crazy for crying over fish ( l had those fish for 8 years ), they said to me l shouldn't cry over my fish's and that l could always buy some more :(

 

l'm hoping that Lukie will be alright, l'm keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers.

Edited by birdluv

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Phoebe
:D Hope Lukie is doing better today. :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I will tell him, Elly - he'll love to hear that!

 

What a horrible thing to happen to your fish, birdluv. Pleased we are not the only ones who care about our fish. We were beginning to feel like sentimental freaks! Although, having said that there are others like us - a while ago some naughty children had been told off by a neighbour for doing something they shouldn't have been doing ( can't remember what it was now). That night they put washing powder in his fish pond and all his fish died! The poor guy was so upset and had tears in his eyes, when telling the story on the local TV news. He felt that the fish must have had a horrible death. Children just don't think or realise what they are doing.

 

Thanks for your good wishes for Lukie, Phoebe. He is improving each day now, but it is quite a slow improvement. I think this illness really got him run down and it will take him longer to get over it. We are just so relieved to see him improving, though.

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hope Lukie is up feeling better today. Have you noticed that he gets these bout of illness like right before a molt or after? Trying to figure out if there is a pattern if there is a way you can boost his immune system.

 

OFFTOPIC: thank you for the kinds on the other post, you were right on track :fear

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it is very good to hear that Lukie is slowly getting better, l'm still thinking about him and praying.

 

p.s. that is awful what happened to those fish, l can not believe how some kids can do that to any living creature, l felt bad for that poor man.

Edited by birdluv

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Elly - just said what I felt. You go to a lot of trouble trying to help people on this forum and are always so kind and supportive. I couldn't leave it at that, when I was quite certain you didn't mean it the way it was taken.

 

As for Lukie getting ill at times of stress eg moulting; yes, he does get ill then. I have noticed it a couple of times. This last time, for example, we had decided to have another go at finger taming him. I was told by a bird behaviourist to try every hour during the day, to get him to sit on my finger. Although he appeared more cross than stressed, it must have stressed him as he got ill shortly after this. We did it very gently, never forcing him to get onto our fingers but he would just fly off with an irritated squawk. We are going to stop trying to tame him now and accept that he doesn't like this kind of contact. We would love to have him tame, but we want him happy far more. He interacts with us in many other ways and we just love him to bits.

 

He is much more alert and active but, having said that, he is still not well. He is often puffed up and we have to keep the room very warm day and night. He eats and drinks as normal and, more importantly, he no longer has diarrhoea or a dirty vent. Most of his droppings are now almost normal but a few are definitely not normal. I still feel concerned for him. It has gone on for a long time. He has had antibiotics for a week now. I don't know how long it takes for the symptoms to subside when treating psittacosis - I must have a look through the forum and see if anyone else's bird had treatment for psittacosis. I feel sure I read a post about that some time ago. Of course, he may not even have psittacosis. What would you do, Elly? Would you wait a bit longer and see how he goes, or go for more tests? I am really grateful for your support - you're a star.

 

 

Thanks so much, birdluv, for your concern for Lukie, it means a lot to me. It was upsetting to see that poor man on the TV, he was so heartbroken as he was convinced that they had had a dreadful death. The parents should be teaching these children to care for living things, but there are people who seem to have no empathy for living creatures. I can't understand it. My parents always taught us to care for wildlife and pets. My father was quite a character. For example,my mother would be trying to get rid of mice and my father would sneak in and remove the poison, then cut up bits of cheese for them!! Can you believe it!! We were never allowed to kill a spider, either. My parents have passed on now, but we have lots of lovely and amusing memories of them. Very special people.

 

Luv

 

Vonn

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

keep us updated and when he is better I would work on boosting his immune system during those times of stress.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...